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Buddism and Christianity - Essay Example

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Buddism and Christianity

The paper compares and contrasts the vision of afterlife in Christianity and Buddhism and considers the morality in these two religions. Buddhism vs Christianity: general overview of the role of afterlife and morality The vision of the world in Buddhism is represented in the following way: the world and the actions of people are connected by causal actions. There are many different gods and their existence is not denied in Buddhism, but they are not the representatives of the basis for morality and they do not give much happiness (Buddhist Afterlife Beliefs, 2007). There is not an afterlife in its pure essence, but the Ultimate Reality, which is a transcendent truth governing the universe and human life. The main Hindu doctrines of reincarnation and karma were accepted by Buddhist practices. A human being should free himself from a desire, to escape the circle of life and death and exist in a kind of a philosophical emptiness. For this phenomenon Nirvana is positioned as a way of liberation. Moreover, there is no role assigned to the eternal soul. It is more about the eternal and everlasting mind in Buddhism, than about soul. Therefore, death is not a final point for the followers of Buddhism. Therefore, it should be noted that death in Buddhism is an option of further reincarnation or rebirth. Buddha departed from Hinduism and claimed that there are no eternal souls of individuals (Yong, 2006). The main goal is to abandon the false senses and leave nothing to reincarnate and to experience no pain. The departed soul is departing during 49 days and there are three basic stages called “bardos”. Then a person reaches Nirvana or reaches the Earth for a rebirth (Buddhist Afterlife Beliefs, 2007). The conscious of a departed has a vision of "Clear White Light", when a person dies. Further apparitions occur and in order to achieve Nirvana the personification of human feelings can be seen. Unlike this religion, Christianity has another representation of an individual’s departure. An important role is assigned to God. God sends an individual either to Hell or to Heaven after the Last Judgment. There are different Christian views about afterlife. The concept of afterlife exists around the life of Christ. It concerns his resurrection, death and Resurrection. There is the following interpretation of afterlife: “At the end of the age, the bodies of the dead shall be raised. The righteous shall enter into full possession of eternal bliss in the presence of God, and the wicked shall be condemned to eternal death” (Christian Beliefs about the Afterlife, 2004). Concerning morality, it is evident that there is a different representation of morality in Christianity and Buddhism. In the former religion, there are evident basic moral pillars and absolutes, which are absent in Buddhism. The latter is more concerned about an individual’s motivation, intentionality of his actions etc. Moreover, Buddhists teachings are focused on the absence of necessity to trigger one’s self perfection from outside. It is on behalf of any follower to advance his decision making and the ability to have his own morals and norms of behavior. The different thing happens to Christian practices of morality: there is God, who is a center of morality perfection and the followers should comply with the God’s instructions in order to purify their souls. A centrality of moral concerns is relevant to Christianity, at the same time, while Buddhism ...Show more

Summary

Name Subject Date Afterlife in Christianity and bardos Buddhism Morality of Buddhism and Christianity Introduction For a long period of time the evident differences between Western and Eastern society have been referred to differences of spiritual practices…
Author : jerald58
Buddism and Christianity essay example
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